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Leinster ready to take their seat at the head of European rugby’s top table

It will take a monumental effort in the final from Racing 92 to deny Leinster victory in a Champions Cup that feels seminal, if certainly not vintage

It has not been a vintage Champions Cup by any stretch but after a weekend of deep intensity, if little in the way of edge?of?the?seat excitement, it is hard to escape the sense it is a seminal one. Since Leinster last sat at the head of the European table, Toulon and Saracens have both taken their turns but they are marching back with a blend of power and precision that suggests they will take some shifting.

It will require an almighty effort from Racing 92 to deny them in Bilbao next month and while the French side had too much in their armoury for a Munster team so uncharacteristically rattled, Leinster’s ability to sustain their excellence for 79 minutes against the Scarlets understandably installs them as favourites. The Scarlets’ scythe was simply no match for Leinster’s sledgehammer and had Racing not palpably taken the foot off the pedal in the second half on Sunday the scoreline would have been every bit as one-sided.

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